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Oct 7, 2012

Tottenham blanks Villa in 4th straight win

Hugo Lloris was a spectator for most of his Barclays Premier League debut as goals from Steven Caulker and Aaron Lennon lifted Tottenham past Aston Villa 2-0 for its fourth straight league victory.

Tottenham occasionally looked vulnerable at the back, but was in control for the vast majority of the game and played some of its best football of the season.

Birthday boy Jermain Defoe, Jan Vertonghen and the mightily impressive Gareth Bale all came close to putting Spurs ahead in the first half, but the Londoners only broke the deadlock after the break through Caulker's lucky first goal for the club.

Defoe smashed a low shot wide from a Bale corner, but the defender was standing in the right place at the right time, the ball clipping his heel and flying past Brad Guzan after 58 minutes.

Soon after Spurs put the game to bed when Lennon picked the ball up off Clint Dempsey, strode past his marker and shot beyond Guzan.

Manager Andre Villas-Boas made the surprise decision to end Brad Friedel's run of 310 consecutive Premier League starts by giving Lloris his English top-flight debut.

The Frenchman, signed for $12.9 million on deadline day, looked solid for the majority of the first half and barely had a thing to do after the break.

He did not hesitate to come off his line -- a criticism often aimed at Friedel -- and he will be glad to have been in goal for Spurs' first clean sheet of the season.

His only hiccup came just after the break when he threw a wayward ball to Vertonghen, but Villa failed to take advantage and Spurs ended the game full of joy knowing it had moved back up to fifth in the table with the win.Cassiano.

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